Financial Consumer Agency of Canada

Financial Consumer Agency of Canada

February 04, 2010 14:37 ET

FCAC Updates its Credit Card Selector Tool

Agency recommends that consumers ask about low introductory interest rates

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Feb. 4, 2010) - The Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) has completely updated its credit card selector tool. This objective, user-friendly Web resource helps consumers compare the costs, advantages and rewards of most credit cards available in Canada.

The credit card selector tool makes it easy to choose from over 250 credit cards from 28 different issuers, including student cards and secured cards. The interactive tool sorts the different products into categories and compares their conditions, options, rewards and other features in an easy-to-read, side-by-side format.

Understanding credit cards and promotional offers: ask plenty of questions

When looking for a new credit card, FCAC advises consumers to learn about the features associated with each one. "Avoid making a decision based solely on the rewards or advantages you are looking for. Take the time to carefully consider interest rates and conditions," advises FCAC Commissioner Ursula Menke. "Introductory interest rates on some credit cards may be appealing, but remember to ask how long these promotional rates last. Most reduced rates end after a set period of time."

Ms. Menke also advises consumers to ask the credit card issuer some critical questions before they select a card.

"Find out which types of transactions are covered by the introductory offer. Ask what the regular interest rate will be when the introductory offer expires and if there are any other circumstances that could cause the introductory offer to end. Make sure you understand how your payments will be applied to your balance, and don't forget to ask the card issuer about any fees and other conditions linked to the offer," the Commissioner said.

FCAC completely updates its credit card selector tool twice a year to provide Canadians with complete and basic information to help them get credit cards that meet their needs.

In addition, FCAC's Credit Cards and You guide contains several publications to help answer your questions about credit cards. You can access FCAC's interactive tools and publications at moneytools.ca.

About FCAC

Using educational materials and interactive tools, FCAC provides consumers with objective information about financial products and services and informs them of their rights and responsibilities when dealing with banks and federally regulated trust, loan and insurance companies. Through its financial literacy program, FCAC also helps Canadians acquire the necessary knowledge and confidence to manage their personal finances. FCAC also makes sure that federally regulated financial institutions comply with legislation and agreements intended to protect consumers.

You can reach us through the FCAC Consumer Contact Centre by calling toll-free 1-866-461-2232 (TTY: 613-947-7771 or 1-866-914-6097) or by visiting our Web site: fcac.gc.ca.

FOR BROADCAST USE

The Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) has updated its credit card selector tool. FCAC develops tools and publications to help consumers determine their financial needs and make informed choices about financial products and services. This interactive tool facilitates the comparison of the latest rates, rewards and features of over 250 credit cards from 28 different companies.FCAC Commissioner Ursula Menke seizes this opportunity to recommend that Canadian consumers ask plenty of questions to ensure they fully understand the terms and conditions of any credit card before signing up for a low introductory interest rate. For additional information or to access FCAC's interactive tools, visit moneytools.ca.

Contact Information